In Position

Posted on August 05, 2014

Although I didn’t go fishing today; I took a fishing photo to help move along this project. This was shot in the late morning so the sun was already to far overhead to be flattering to the subjects. So it was essential to create a strong composition to make up for the ordinary light. I decided on a Black & White to really bring out the graphic elements. While I’m processing, I’m thinking of this image as I would my street photograph, with a definite separation between the darks and lights and a wide tonal

Compositionally speaking I’m balancing two very powerful compositional elements in this photo. One being Mt Hood in the background while the other being the fishing boat. The fishing boat is the major focal point and its position in the frame was no accident. I waited for the boat to be just in the right position before taking picture. I wanted the boat to counterbalance the mountain and I wanted the frame to read from left to right. I also wanted to capture the boat’s oars out of the water to give the boat an interesting silhouette. Overlapping people make for confusing silhouettes so it was important to clearly see the three fisherman individually. in the end, I not only waited for the boat to be in place in the frame, I also waited for the occupants be in position.

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A Decade in the Waiting

Posted on August 05, 2014

Believe it or not, this image was ten years in the making. I first heard of Trillium Lake in Oregon from a snowboard friend who posted a summer trip report he took to the region. The lake famous for its reflection of the eternally snow capped volcano, Mt Hood. When I saw his posted image of the mountain reflecting in the lake, I put the lake on my photo bucket list. This morning I finally fulfilled that bucket list entry and captured the image I envisioned ten years earlier.

This was captured in the early morning, before anyone else was on the lake. There are no motor boats allowed on the lake but by 10:00 am the water gets so chopped up from a couple of other boaters, you loose the mirror reflection of the lakes surface and this capture would be impossible. As it was, I had to slowly paddle into position and sit motionless until the water settled. Any slight movement would create ripples so I had to hold the camera to my eye and wait until the ripples settled. When the reflection was right where I wanted it, I carefully snap the shutter without rocking the boat. There are still a couple of ripples in the reflection but I like how they add the the painterly quality of the image.

Just a quick word about process: This was taken with a Sony A7 with a Zeiss 35mm f2.8 lens. When I’m on a boat, the camera is protected by a pelican case strapped to the bow of the boat. When I ready to shoot I open the case and carefully get out the camera. My camera has built in wifi so I was able to download a lower resolution JPGs to my iPad and then develop in Lightroom Mobile. I wrote this entry in iWrite on my iPad and posted to the internet from a personal hotspot created by my phone. This was all possible from my campsite! I couldn’t have done this ten years ago, I’m so glad I waited?

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The War Zone – Central Oregon

Posted on August 04, 2014

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Driving through Central Oregon today felt like a war zone. From what I read on the National Weather Service site, there was an excess of dry fuel available that had the potential to be started by the scattered thunderstorms passing thru the region. There was a constant stream of fire fighting vehicles on the highway going in both directions. There were Incident Outposts set up on the roadside and firefighters everywhere were on alert, waiting for the next flair up. I talk to a fellow traveler at a gas station who was going in the opposite direction who said he couldn’t get his family home because they closed the highway going south. No time for fishing today. This was a serious situation and my best option was to leave the area and head north to my next destination.

Now that I’m sitting in my tent with Mt Hood on the horizon, I’m feeling much safer. The fire danger in Northern Oregon is rated at High which is a comfort knowing that it’s not extream like the war zone to the south. The rivers up here are much higher too and the pastures looked greener. I can only hope that when I cross into Southern Washington in a couple of days, it will be more of the same.

As for the photo: I’m not sure how this fire started but I knew at first glance it was the defining image for my travels today. I took this from roadside after that first sighting with a long lens. I tried to get closer to the blaze but the police had already blocked off the area to non-essential people. I didn’t press it, I just moved on and let these brave men and women do their jobs.

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